This week’s option for civic engagement is an always-timely disaster preparedness event – the Crenshaw Disaster Preparedness Expo – which runs from 10 a.m to 4 p.m. Saturday at the West Angeles Church of God in Christ, 3600 Crenshaw Blvd. Because it really is a matter of when, not if, this is a great chance to connect with forums, workshops, materials and other resources to prepare your household for a big emergency. And there will be children’s activities as well, so go ahead and bring the whole family.
Later on Saturday morning, join 1933 Group and the Los Angeles Conservancy for an open house at the historic Formosa Café, 7156 Santa Monica Blvd., 90046. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., guests will get a behind-the-scenes peek inside the currently closed cafe, learn more about its history, and partake of free food and swag (while supplies last). The event is free, but attendees will be asked to vote, while there, for the Formosa in the nationwide Partners in Preservation program. For more information, and to RSVP, see https://www.facebook.com/events/116894722338179/
On Saturday afternoon, head back to the Larchmont area for the monthly Friends of the Library Used Book Sale at the John C. Fremont branch Library, 6121 Melrose Ave. Running Friday (today) from 12-4 p.m. and Saturday from 12-5, the event – as always – offers great books, CDs, and DVDs at great prices (many $1 or less). Proceeds, also as always, go directly to support the library.
As the day winds down later, a great stop would be the 19th Annual Los Angeles Greek Festival, which runs all day Friday (5-11 p.m.), Saturday (12-11 p.m.) and Sunday (12-10 p.m.) at the St. Sophia Cathedral, at Pico and Normandie (1324 S. Normandie Ave.) in the Byzantine-Latino Quarter (and, yes, Virginia, there is an official Byzantine-Latino Quarter in LA). The LA Greek Fest is “the largest and most iconic Greek food and wine festival in Los Angeles,” and features classic Greek food, music, dancing, culture and more. All proceeds benefit the Cathedral, and there will be hourly tours of the Cathedral as well. Also note that free, secure parking is available nearby and shuttle service will be offered continuously to satellite lots.
On Sunday morning, there’s a great way to get out and enjoy your city up close and personal as CicLAvia: Heart of LA closes six miles of city streets to motorized vehicles and opens them for bikes, roller skaters, skateboarders, walkers and others. This time, the event covers a route from Echo Park to Boyle Heights. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m, and it’s free and appropriate for all ages (it’s not a race, so you can jump in anywhere along the route, at any time during the event hours, and simply move and explore at your own pace). Stores and restaurants along the route will be open, with many offering specials for Ciclavia participants. See the link above for the route map and other details.
Later on Sunday, starting at 12:30 p.m., LACMA is featuring not just one, but two Andell Family Sundays events this week. These artist-led workshops feature tours of current exhibitions, followed by art-making activities for all ages. In the first of this Sunday’s offerings, Design/Diseño, participants will explore how designers in California and Mexico have shared ideas in the special Found in Translation exhibit…and then make their own diseños.
In the second LACMA workshop, Indigo Dye, also starting at 12:30 p.m., families will join Porfirio Gutiérrez, Master Weaver in the Zapotec tradition, for a natural indigo dyeing workshop. Gutiérrez will share the history of this traditional art form, as well as lead participants through the dyeing process. Both workshops are free with museum admission, but the dyeing workshop will be limited to the first 30 participants, on a first come, first serve basis. All ages are welcome; children must be accompanied by an adult.
Meanwhile, across the street at the Craft and Folk Art museum, families can enjoy a CraftLab Family Workshop: Ooey Gooey Slime, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. on Sunday. Participants will put on their scientist gear and use ordinary household items to create their own fun and colorful slimy concoctions. Admission is $7 for adults, $5 for children, and free for CAFAM members.
Finally on Sunday, if you’ve already done the Greek Fest and are still looking for something special to do for dinner, a number of local restaurants – including Commerson, Kali and others – are participating in LA Loves Puerto Rico, a week-long effort to raise money for hurricane relief efforts in storm-ravaged Puerto Rico. From October 7-14, order one of the special menu items at the participating restaurants, and 100% of the purchase price will be donated to the worthy cause. See the links above for the full list of restaurants and eligible food/drink items.
Have a great weekend!